Dave Bush is a set dresser and production buyer in the film industry, living and working in Los Angeles. Having dabbled with sewing in childhood, he recently has rediscovered it as a fun approach to matters practical and fashionable. He aspires to one day make the perfect black suit.
WHEN DID YOU LEARN HOW TO SEW?
I learned the rudiments in grade school, where machine sewing was taught as part of the arts and crafts program. Assignments generally were things like stuffed animals and hand puppets, but covered such basics as basting, seam allowances, making and using patterns, etc.
WHAT KIND OF MACHINE DID YOU FIRST LEARN TO SEW ON?
I don't recall the model, but it was a mechanical tabletop machine that only did straight-stitches. Black, metal, heavy, likely twice as old as I was.
WHAT MACHINE DO YOU SEW ON NOW?
My current machine is also my first one, a Singer 4411 purchased several months ago. Reviewers summed it as a reliable, novice-friendly model that can handle somewhat heavier-duty projects, which fits my needs perfectly.
WHAT DO YOU MOST USE YOUR MACHINE FOR?
Mainly basic alteration, as necessitated by being 5'11" and thin-waisted. As retail sizes generally are too wide for me, the machine has helped manage what was a constant and growing frustration. I hope to undertake pattern sewing as my skills and savviness develop.
The machine will also help me as a production buyer for film sets, where imperatives of size, color and quantity can pose a challenge. An otherwise perfect set of drapes may be longer than required, or the fabric in a medical folding screen may not be a suitable color. Having a sewing machine will allow me to fix such things in a time-efficient, budget-friendly way.
WHAT IS YOUR 'DREAM MACHINE'?
In my perfect world I would have a magic wand. My current machine fulfills my needs for now, but the decadent Bernina 330 would fulfill them with much more panache.
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE A BEGINNING SEWER LOOKING TO INVEST IN THEIR FIRST MACHINE?
I would offer the same advice given me, which is to identify your real needs as a sewer and shop accordingly. Online user reviews at sites such as Amazon.com offer helpful real-world feedback, often flagging a model's problems or defects. I also would recommend talking to friends
who are sewers, drawing from their general insights and experience. One friend of mine summed things in two sentences: "Know exactly what you want the machine to do. Don't spend more than $200."